battle hymn of a chinese (=Indian) mom

Every once a while, these kinds of news reach my mostly unread mailbox, and I get an immediate urge to respond. But I have noticed (thankfully) that someone or the other of sane people out there, would always respond with solid data / emotions / intelligence to the nonsensical and banal  – the stuff that Amy Chuas are made of…

Oh the powers of distributed computing and ranting…

Anyway, my long suffering friend Azfar forwarded this tiger mom’s book (Battle hymn of the Tiger Mother) extract published by WSJ – and asked for my rabid comments. This was a while back.

Why Chinese Mothers Are Superior
http://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache:onXNCQ0mvlMJ:online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704111504576059713528698754.html+amy+chua+WSJ&cd=2&hl=en&ct=clnk&gl=us

Another copy of the same content: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704111504576059713528698754.html?mod=ITP_review_0

I was frankly too horrified about the cocky surefootedness of this mom but generally mumbled something like ‘each unto his/her own’ etc etc. I thought I would eventually write a rejoinder, but realize that, of course, I can’t do a better job than Christine Carter, definitely…

How to raise an unhappy child
http://blogs.berkeley.edu/2011/01/20/how-to-raise-an-unhappy-child/

Lovely. Thanks Christine.

You may be interested in knowing about our desi editions of Helicopter Parents.

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Comments

  • Sipayi  On March 6, 2011 at 11:21 am

    I have not read the “battle hymn…” book; however, saw her interview on PBS. First of all, she is an American, by birth. Her tone and ideas were completely different from how media portrays her. Either she has learnt the fallacies of her ideas, or, as she claims, her ideas are totally misquoted by media and she is doing damage control.

  • Ramjee Swaminathan  On March 6, 2011 at 11:59 am

    Thanks for your take. I haven’t read the book either, Sipayi.

    But I did dig around for her opinion on the whole thing. The proximate reason was that for the fourth time, in the past 2 months, I got this link from one of my acquaintances – of course without any comment or opinion whatsoever!

    I do not agree that she has been misquoted. There may have been a sensational headline or some such thing – but that is it, I think. If you go thru the following interview you realize the nervousness and ‘willing to please’ kind of posture etc etc. The body language of Amy was palpable too.

    Good Morning America: Amy Chua/Tiger Mom, “Didn’t Expect this Level of Intensity!” 1/26/2011

    But I haven’t seen the PBS interview. No energy to hunt around for it. I have seen so many otherwise capable children getting totally steamrolled by idiotic parents that any hint of an absolute control freakishness gives me the heebiejeebies.

    Again, I agree that there should be no ‘witch hunting’ – each unto his own and all that. If she must, she should do damage control.

    Finally, as I am wont to repeat: Those who live by the sword, die by it. This would be true of an Amy or a Ramjee.

    Thanks again, dear.

  • Sipayi  On August 25, 2011 at 10:08 am

    Lot of water has passed under many bridges, but want to retrospectively thank you for the post.
    I read your link – “How to Raise an Unhappy Child,” and the Confucius’ work. Discussed with a few Chinese moms asking them to compare “Battle Hymn… Mom” and “Dao De Jing”; got very emotional responses.

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